Keep up-to-date with all the latest coronavirus restriction updates here, including news on Christmas bubbles and lockdown lifting.
New Tier 2 restrictions in Gloucestershire will see all White Feather Forest of Dean properties reopen following the end of lockdown next Wednesday (2nd December).
Announcements this week by Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Health Secretary Matt Hancock mean that households travelling together after the 2nd will be welcomed into open holiday lets over December, as long as they follow updated guidance for Tier 2, otherwise known as a ‘high alert’ area:
- Guests must travel within a single household or support bubble
- No non-essential travel into Tier 2 from Tier 3 areas (details of ‘essential travel’ here)
- No socialising in groups of more than six people outside, including in a garden or a public space
- Limit the number of journeys taken to reach the destination
- Take necessary precautions when travelling and avoid sharing a car with people outside of the household
Anyone contacted as part of England’s test and trace programme must stay at home. If they develop symptoms, everyone in the bubble must self-isolate.
In England, people will be allowed to form support bubbles with those who live in an area with a higher tier rating.
Over the five-day Christmas period from 23rd to 27th December across the UK, the single-household bubble can be extended to include two other households. There is no limit to the number of people in a household joining a bubble in England or Wales.
Up-to-date governmental guidance is available here. It reads: “If someone is in your Christmas bubble, you can visit each other’s homes and stay overnight, including in private rented accommodation. You can also go to a place of worship together, or meet in public outdoor spaces.”
Parks and parts of the countryside remain open to the general public, meaning that visitors can enjoy all the walks, cycle routes and open spaces publicly accessible across the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley – as long as they observe the ‘rule of six’.
Christmas bubbles may travel between tiers and between England and Wales during this five-day period only, but once at the destination they must follow the rules of that tier.
Visitors should not travel as part of a Christmas Bubble before 23rd or after 27th December other than in exceptional circumstances (for example, if a member of the bubble develops symptoms of COVID-19 and they are required to self-isolate).
Anyone travelling to or from Northern Ireland may travel on the 22nd and 28th December.
Pubs and restaurants selling food will reopen from Wednesday, with groups from the same household permitted to sit together inside in line with the Tier 2 restrictions in Gloucestershire. Pub-goers can however sit with people outside their household once outdoors under the ‘rule of six’.
Venues will close at 11pm. During the five-day Christmas break, there will be no change to these rules.
Weddings and funerals can go ahead from 2nd with restrictions on numbers of attendees. 15 people can attend wedding ceremonies and receptions, 30 people can attend funeral ceremonies, and 15 people can attend linked commemorative events such as wakes or stone settings.
The rules in Wales are set to be confirmed next Monday (30th November).